sweater one – Laika

I’m making good progress on my four sweaters, and have managed to get two off the needles.  First, here is my Laika, knit in Old Maiden Aunt superwash merino 4ply, in the seriously beautiful Bitterbug colourway.

I love this. (Again.)  For this one I knit the edging to half the width, and added a zip.  I’m not sure I’m completely happy with the way the zip went in, I’m gonna wait and see once I’ve worn it a bit then maybe re-do it.

I would still consider making another one, but I think my knitting buddies will try and talk me out of it.  There are many other things to knit, and many things in my queue, and knitting myself three sweaters from the same pattern does seem a little excessive.

Other sweater progress:
Angostura – this is done, just have to get a few more pictures.
Laar – almost done, just one sleeve and the neck edging to go.
Arielle – no progress really, though I did look out the needles I need to cast on the front.  I don’t think that really counts as working on it though.


cake in progress

Work has been continuing on my cake sampler by Rebecca Ringquist, and then at midnight inspiration decided it was the right time to start to machine stitch the border –

Often when I work suddenly late at night I undo everything the next day, but I really like this.  I was struggling to work with the pink background, but the border seems to bring the hand-stitching and backing fabric together (there’s more pink in the fabric than this photo suggests!)

Then I felt the need to embroider some text at the bottom…

…which meant spending a very happy five minutes looking at cake recipes on the internet.

I think this will be done in the next couple of days, and then its onto my next Cake Themed Craft Project – this cross-stitch pattern from Defiant Damsel on Etsy

The only problem is that I have some storage issues for my embroidery supplies – any ideas?!  Maybe just being less messy is the answer?

four sweaters

Last week I realised that I had four sweaters on my needles, which is a bit excessive, even for me.  I announced at my knitting group that I was going to Get Them Done, and that no other sweater projects would get near my needles until every single one was in my wardrobe.

The closest to being finished is my second Laika, in Old Maiden Aunt superwash merino in the beautiful Bitterbug colourway.  It’s blocked, the ends are woven in (even the ones that I think people can’t see), but after carefully pinning in the zip yesterday I discovered I’d bought completely the wrong kind, that doesn’t open at the bottom end.  Gah.

Next in line is Angostura, knitted in Quince and Co Lark in Gingerbread.  I am loving making this and am working my way up the back so it should be done in a couple of days.  It looks a bit strange on the dressform which is kinda the wrong size and shape, but when pinned out to the right measurements the front is perfect.

Arielle by Kim Hargreaves has been the longest on my needles.  The edging is a little tedious which I think is why I stalled on starting the front.  But its really pretty and I want to wear it, so its been moved to the top of my knitting basket.

The final sweater is Laar, by Gudrun Johnston.  It’s lovely, but needs a front and back (from above the armholes), and sleeves.  I believe that it tried to take revenge on me for leaving it so long by refusing to stay in focus in a single picture.  There are some lovely ones appearing from the needles of my knitting friends, and I want to get it done so I can wear it before winter hits…

Generally I am in a mood for finishing things just now, to the extent that I even sewed a missing button on Mr Saz’s shirt, and can almost see the bottom of my ironing pile.  The unfinished pile of curtain fabric heaped up in my office has been moved to beside my sewing machine, I’m not sure what’s wrong with me!

more spinning – storm

This is spun from a 50g batt of merino and silk, dyed by Krafty Koala which I picked up at Woofest during my fibre splurge in 2009.  It’s wheel spun, a 2ply that’s roughly a DK weight, and a very squishy 110m.

I finished this up yesterday as a gift for my buddy, workmate, Knit Nation room mate and fellow spindler Rebecca.  Spending time with her always makes me want to spin, even if I didn’t actually do any while we were away.  I’m making up for it now I’m home though…


I was starting to think that I’d never see it done, but at 10.15pm last night my handspun for Ishbel was finally finished!

It’s from Lilith of Old Maiden Aunt, superwash merino fibre in the colourway Moody.  This is the original colourway for Ishbel, and so what this beautiful fibre was always destined to be.  I have around 480m of a fine fingering weight, so I’m going to knit the small stocking stitch section of the shawl then go with the lace until I run out.

The singles were spindle-spun but I cheated for the plying which I did on my wheel.  It’s a little under-plied in places, but lovely and bouncy.  I can’t believe that I first started spinning this in early 2009.  It’s not actually taken all that time to spin as there were several extended breaks, but I’ve already started spindling something else to see how long it takes if I work on it for 10 minutes a day.

This is from A Verb for Keeping Warm, 50 Merino/50 Silk, in the colourway Magic Bean –

I had a lovely time at Knit Nation too, meeting knitters and yarn shop owners in real life is always fun!  I came away with a few lovely things, and realised when I got home that the yarn I picked up from Lilith for a Fugue hat and tam set by Kate Davies, is um, in the Moody colourway too.  (And Driech, which is another colour I’m using for a project-in-progress.)  Hee.


a green dress, a green hoodie, and a panic

This weekend I managed to work a bit on my current deadline projects.  This is most important – a dress for my very glamorous red-headed sister which needs to be finished today.

The pattern is Eclair from Colette Patterns.  The printed silk is Liberty and I’m not totally sure what the solid green is, the very helpful lady in The Dress Fabric Company helped me choose it but I’m not as good as keeping a note of what materials I use in sewing projects as I am with my knitting.

It’s almost done and I’ve even hand-sewn the hem, which I found strangely satisfying.  It just needs a zip and finished up the side, and the bodice lining sewn in.

It’s not even for me and I am very, very happy with it.  So much so that I can proudly show the inside workings to my Gran.  But the most important thing is that my sister seems to love it, and is rushing round after work to try it on again.  Happy happy.

And then this is my new Laika.  My first one took a bit of beating when I literally one hour after taking the finished photos, I went out for a walk with Penny and was pounced on by two small and very excited dogs off their lead.  They had very sharp claws and a completely ignorant owner who simply shrugged at me when I asked her to call her dogs back, and then did nothing.  My poor sweater needed a little surgery, but its going to be ok.

The pattern though is so much fun I wanted to knit another one to wear at Knit Nation this weekend.  This plan is a little mad though and I don’t think I’ll make it, unless my buddy Rebecca suddenly gets the urge to drive the entire way to London, I stop requiring sleep and elves secretly set up Ysolda’s booth in the night.  I am going to power-on though.  The body is done so its really just the two sleeves and the hood.  I’m going to knit the edging much narrower and put in a zip, which I have optimistically waiting to take with me on the trip.

And my final panic – I knew this already, but cute puppies such as the lovely Ruby Cupcake should not be left un-eyeballed.  I was in the same room, just not looking at her.   She went a little quiet, I looked over and she was chomping on my second-sock-on-the-needles, BFF by Cookie A, the July pattern in the knit.sock.love KAL.  She looked so happy though that for about half a second I almost let her keep it.

I managed to save the yarn though, even though it does now feel a little, um, crispy.


I haven’t many finished craft projects to show recently, but I am working on and thinking about a few things…

A second Laika, this time in some of the gorgeous yarn ever dyed – Old Maiden Aunt superwash merino in Bitter Bug.

Decorating and planning our new kitchen…

Embroidering a cake, another sampler from Rebecca Ringquist.

Figuring a way to transfer pictures from my garden into a large embroidered, patchwork and quilted masterpiece, hee hee!  (I am excited and have a lot of ideas, but the scale of this project is a little intimidating… one to tackle later in the summer…)

Sewing a lovely dress for my lovely sister, Eclair by Colette Patterns

And suddenly working on my longest ever WIP, started two years ago, Lissajous by Cookie A.